Marianopolis Student Union Congress
2020-2021 Academic Year
16th Official Meeting
|Location: Google Meets|
Day: Friday, October 16, 2020
Time of Start: 4:17 PM
|Facilitator: Laurence Liang|
Meeting type: Weekly
Note taker and timekeeper: Thomas Khairy
|List of attendees (Congress members): Tristan Boucher, Misha Fotovati, Zhaoran Wu, Emanuel Cosimo Curto, Maria-Vera Azadian, Pratham Mehta, Allison Engo, Thomas Khairy, Yu Zheng Lu, Yena Lee, Laurence Liang Regrets: Mahmuda (Mau) Sekendra Mahin, Anne Lin Arghirescu (late)|
List of attendees (guests): Siwen Shen
Student Services Representative: Ms. Trudy St-Croix
- Call to Order
The Regular Weekly Marianopolis Student Union (MSU) Congress Meeting of October 16, 2020, was convened at 4:17 PM by President Laurence Liang.
- Roll Call of Members
The MSU Congress Members who are present at this meeting are: Tristan Boucher, Misha Fotovati, Zhaoran Wu, Emanuel Cosimo Curto, Maria-Vera Azadian, Pratham Mehta, Allison Engo, Thomas Khairy, Yu Zheng Lu, Yena Lee, Laurence Liang.
Anne Lin Arghirescu arrived late.
- Guests presented by Laurence
The guests who are present at this meeting are: Siwen Shen, representative from the Marianopolis World Review, and Trudy St-Croix, Student Services Representative.
- Approval of last meeting’s Minutes
The Minutes of the Regular Weekly MSU Congress Meeting of October 9, 2020 were written by Thomas Khairy. These Minutes were approved by Laurence Liang on the 16th of October, 2020.
- Approval of the Agenda
The Agenda of this day’s meeting has been unanimously approved.
- Unfinished Business and General Orders
- First Year Committees by Allison, Yu Zheng and Pratham
The elected First-Year Congress members give an update on their committees. Allison conducted interviews and the number of applications exceeded her expectations. She plans on dividing her committee into 3 teams (charities, volunteering, logistics) of 5 members each. Pratham has also conducted interviews and has chosen 9 members for his committee. Yu Zheng has selected 13 members for her committee and they have already begun working on projects. Laurence informs Congress that 7 people applied for the Tech Committee.
- Student Volunteer Interpreters by Allison
Allison contacted different heads of hospitals seeking approval of her Student Volunteer Interpreters initiative. The head of the Jewish General Emergency Department “100% support[s] this initiative.” Allison says that this is great news, considering that the JGH is Montreal’s designated COVID hospital. She concludes her update by stating that everything is going to plan and that training for volunteers will begin soon. She plans to have a ‘pilot’ timeline as a test before allowing more students to join.
- Initiatives outside of a mandate and Votes presented by Tristan
Tristan clarifies that all Congress members are free to begin projects outside of their mandates, as long as they first speak with the person in charge of that mandate. Furthermore, if a project will cost Congress money, it should be voted on before anyone starts working on it.
- Social Justice Update presented by Tristan
Tristan announces that weekly Social Justice movies will be Fridays from 8-10 on Netflix Party starting next week. The classical/chill music playlist was supposed to be posted last Saturday but it’s still in work. Finally, the Tell Us Your Story project will no longer be worked on since only 2 stories were submitted.
- CASAQ meeting update by Pratham
Pratham met with CASAQ last week to discuss Student Insurance. Since Plan Major was problematic last year, Laurence and Pratham recommend choosing other options. Vanier has signed a deal with Studentcare, which Pratham explains is not exactly an insurance company but rather a plan that pairs students’ needs with different insurance companies. They have partnerships with many universities which makes them credible. Laurence says that students might not even need insurance. He suggests surveying the student body regarding insurance. Discussion is continued in IX.A. Finally, the CASAQ GA of October 22nd was shifted online, and Pratham and Mau will represent Marianopolis.
- Ted Talk by Pratham
Pratham reached out to Mairanopolis’ Ted Talk club executive for input on the draft for his project. The feedback received was constructive and appreciated. All CASAQ schools have said that they are in on the project. Pratham’s next step is advertising to the student body and choosing speakers.
- Escape room by Pratham
Trudy and Pratham had a call with McGill to talk about how they conducted their virtual escape room. The company that McGill went with charged them about $800 for 500 students, so Pratham wants to negotiate with them for a potential better deal. If Congress chooses to purchase this company’s services, Congress members will receive formation for supervising the different rooms. Pratham says that Congress also has the possibility of purchasing a licence for the service to be used again. Emanuel says that this purchase sounds reasonable coming out of the student activities budget and that Congress can vote on it next meeting or poll on Slack.
- Committee Lists by Thomas
Thomas reminds Congress members that they must send him their list of committee members once it is finalized. He asks that this be done before next meeting.
- Circles for Reconciliation by Anne
Anne informs Congress that the first Circle was held Oct 15 and that it was a huge success. There were participants from all over Canada. Although the circles for this semester are finalized, Anne is looking into the possibility of including faculty and staff for next semester since there is an interest. Finally, Anne plans on asking participants to talk about their experience so that she can make a booklet for non-participants to also benefit from the knowledge acquired.
- New Business
- ConU Composting Meeting Recap presented by Tristan
Tristan met with a Concordia student to talk about compost. One of the suggestions of the ConU student was teaching students what can and cannot be composted. Tristan proposes doing this in general classes, similarly to the library sessions in English classes. He also wants to collect waste production stats, which is something that schools usually don’t keep track of. The aim would be to track Marianopolis’ progress. He also says that he wants the cafeteria to sell reusable water bottles. Tristan will meet with Alex Pulkki of the sustainability group council next week, since he believes that the administration will be encouraged to implement these composting strategies once they hear that universities are doing it. Anne mentions that her high school implemented the Food Matters Action Kit, which is a research guided on how to implement compost in schools. They calculate how much food is wasted by an establishment to tailor a solution specifically to them. Tristan will look into this and follow up on Slack.
- Academic Integrity Task force presented by Laurence
Congress has to select 2 students to represent the MSU on the Academic Integrity Task Force. Laurence and Mau’s criteria were the following: 1 first-year and 1 second-year from different programs in Congress. Tristan says that he wants this taskforce to deal with cheating cases whenever they aren’t black and white, but Misha disagrees since she believes that cheating cases should remain a private matter. Allison, Yena, and Anne say they are willing to do it. Discussion is continued in IX.D.
- Meeting length presented by Zhaoran
Zhoaron expresses her concerns about weekly meetings often going over the 2-hour time limit. She admires that Congress members are committed to their projects, but the 2-hour limit is meaningless if it is exceeded every time. Many specific suggestions were made by Zhaoran, Misha, Tristan, Emanuel, and Laurence. Since the conversation doesn’t seem to approach an end, Thomas volunteers to edit the agenda template prior to next meeting with these suggested changes.
- Halloween activities by Zhaoran and Pratham
Zhaoran and Pratham want to have a Halloween costume contest on Facebook. Students can submit a picture or video of their costume and a prize will be given to the top rated. They also want to have an intercollegiate Pumpkin carving contest. Zhaoran wants to stream a horror movie on Facebook with her committee. Allison recommends testing out the movie prior to streaming it to make sure everything goes to plan. Finally, Pratham mentions a potential Halloween collaboration with Dawson.
- Discussion on Student Insurance
Laurence confirms that he wil survey the students regarding insurance. Misha asks if the school will increase tuition if Congress chooses an insurance. Trudy says that it will, but as a separate fee (tuition, MSU fee, insurance). Trudy says that Congress therefore cannot make this decision without the school’s approval and need buy-in from the College. Emmanuel points out that Congress should probably contact the administration before surveying the students since the College’s buy-in is needed. Laurence will mention this point during his meeting with the Academic Dean. Finally, Pratham offers to contact the company and ask them to present their benefits to Congress so that members have a better understanding of the service.
- SJ Discussion
Pratham thinks that Tristan should collaborate with the Study Sheep Club for Study Groups since they were first to the market. He stresses that it is important to have collabs between Congress and clubs. Unfortunately, the Study Sheeps club’s Study Groups were created differently from how Tristan had imagined, but he is open to a collaboration for a future project.
- Website pictures by Maria
All Congress first years have until October 17th to send a professional picture of themselves to Maria for the website. Allison asks if the picture has to be taken at Marianopolis, to which Maria says no. The preferable color palette is blue and white, but this is not forced.
- Academic Integrity Task force presented by Laurence (5 mins)
Unfortunately, no Congress second year has the time to be a part of the Task Force, so Misha and Pratham suggest that Congress members ask people in their committees if they are interested. Misha also suggests that the second year be chosen before the first year since Congress already has 3 options for the first year. Laurence decides that the deadline for the selection will be Sunday Oct 18 at midnight.
Final selection: Yena and Emma Rodriguez (member of the Student Advocacy Committee).
Motion to adjourn – Passed (unanimously)
This meeting was adjourned at 5:36 PM.
Total duration: 1 hour and 19 minutes.